Why would you use Launchpad when you have Spotlight or Quicksilver?

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by seetheforest, May 28, 2011.

  1. seetheforest macrumors member

    Dec 24, 2010
    Keystroke prompted file launchers seem so much faster than using Launchpad for Apps and whatever you like for opening files. I know that some of the iOS features are aimed at the casual user, but I think even the casual user would prefer to just launch the app after pressing a keystroke and typing the name of it.

    Is there some benefit to Launchpad that I am missing?
  2. xUKHCx Administrator emeritus


    Jan 15, 2006
    The Kop
    What if it was easier to touch an app on the launchpad than go to the keyboard, or launch a software keyboard, and start typing. ;)

    It is another method to launch applications, some people are visual and would prefer to use a visual method rather than remembering what the application is called etc. I know my grandparents would use launchpad for example if they had a mac. I don't see myself using it but I am sure there are people who would and if it benefits their mac experience then all the better.
  3. baryon macrumors 68040


    Oct 3, 2009
    What if you don't remember the name of an app? What if you have many apps and don't even know what you want? What if you have 30 games and want to play something, but you want to see them all to decide? You then need a visual representation. Before, you used the Finder, now you have the Launchpad which is the same thing just prettier, and specifically designed for Apps. I think it makes sense. If you quickly want to launch something, then of course, use Spotlight.
  4. Thunderbird macrumors 6502a


    Dec 25, 2005
    Couldn't one just pin all the app icons (aliases) to the desktop, so that when booting up the machine all your apps are right there? It would save a step or two from using LaunchPad every time.
  5. seetheforest thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 24, 2010
    A lot of that makes sense. I didn't think about browsing games but that is a perfect use for it. I would imagine that I would just open the games folder with Quicksilver and browse that way, but Launchpad is a reasonable alternative for that.
  6. kuwisdelu macrumors 65816

    Jan 13, 2008
    If my hands are already on the touchpad/mouse, Launchpad seems like it would be faster. If my hands are already on the keyboard, I'll just use Alfred.
  7. Lukeit macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2011
    Shanghai, China
    When launchpad allowed to remove certain application and more easily regroup them without crashing, I used to have my applications grouped according to my use: first page the most common and everyday use, second page utilities I use for specific tasks not very often, third page games and so on...
    I have always used Spotlight with SL, then Lion, in the very early builds, made Spotlight way to slow and sluggish to be used as application launcher, so I started to use launchpad and liked it...
    Could it be Apple made it on purpose to slow down spotlight in order to divert user on the launchpad ?
    With the new Lion build I only hope Apple could restore the chance to simply remove applications from launchpad WITHOUT deleting them from the system which seems the case with the latest build.
  8. infernohellion macrumors 6502

    May 14, 2006
    For me, even if my hands are already on the touchpad, it's going to be slower than Alfred still because I'll have to look/scroll through my apps in Launchpad. :eek:
  9. Cougarcat macrumors 604

    Sep 19, 2003
    What I don't get is that for all the reasons you might prefer Launchpad, I think it would be faster just to create a stack or two in the dock in Grid mode.
  10. lewis82 macrumors 68000


    Aug 26, 2009
    Totalitarian Republic of Northlandia
    There is a gesture to use Launchpad. I already use folders in the dock, but I'll happily use Launchpad. I just hope that we can increase the density of icons.
  11. Goldfrapp macrumors 601


    Jul 31, 2005
    Personally, I find Launchpad extremely useless. Alfred + Spotlight are the best launchers.

    The aforementioned advantages of using Launchpad are rare and uncommon amongst most users. Seriously, how often do you use Launchpad? Oftentimes, I forget it's even there.
  12. Lukeit macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2011
    Shanghai, China
    I have put launchpad into a "hot corner" and it's much, much, much more snappy than using alias into a dock with a stack... your icons are there immediately available to click and if, like me, also use magic mouse, it's a breeze to scroll and find the app you want

    I used to use spotlight but sometimes I realized I was thinking to the name of the App before I could open it... and it took time.

    I personally find launchpad very handy especially when you'll be able again to organize it and group apps according to your needs
  13. Furrybeagle macrumors 6502


    Sep 13, 2004
    You overestimate how fast most people can type.

    Additionally, most people use icons and their spacial location as visual cues to remember what to do. It’s a lot easier for some people to remember “click the compass in the top right corner”, as opposed to “hit control-space and then type ‘safari’ and then hit enter”. Launchpad/Dock present a number of visual choices, whereas keyboard launchers require the user to remember strings of text.

    Although I’m not really sure why Launchpad is that much better than the Dock.
  14. baryon, May 30, 2011
    Last edited: May 30, 2011

    baryon macrumors 68040


    Oct 3, 2009
    I never know if Address Book is called "Address Book" or "Contacts" or whatever. On iPhone it's called "Contacts" and on OS X it's called "Address Book", causing all the confusion. I rarely use it so it's not on my dock, but when I use Spotlight to open it, I sometimes sit there thinking what the hell I'm doing wrong as it's not showing up.

    Same thing with "System Profiler" and "Activity Monitor". I'm sure that when I want the Activity Monitor, I start typing "System..." and I don't get the right app. If I had icons of both of them next to each other, it would take me 0 seconds to figure it out.

    I don't think of Spotlight as an official solution to launching apps. It's handy when you quickly need an app that's not on your dock, but there has to be an icon view for all your apps, in my opinion. This is the 21st century, we no longer use command lines to do things and the GUI has become the only way to do things. It's nice to have some command-line style things such as Spotlight to make things faster, but there simply has to be a graphical way to do things too.

    Opening Finder and clicking Applications and then scrolling through all the random folders that installers create is a pain. Then you don't know if what you're looking for is supposed to be there or in a folder. The launchpad solves that issue as you can rearrange everything the way you want, and even remove unwanted shortcuts.

    Using a stack to do this is not an official solution. I find stacks buggy, scrolling is laggy and there's no way to rearrange your icons any way you want. In stacks, you also have to either use the entire Applications folder, which is annoying as there are many things in there you don't want, or you have to make a special "Alias" folder where you put the aliases to the apps you want. That's hardly official and elegant, it's more like a workaround than the way Apple meant things to be.

    Launchpad is the way Apple meant things to be. I think it's good, but maybe it should not take up all your screen.
  15. Chundles macrumors G4


    Jul 4, 2005
    That's the great thing about Launchpad.

    You don't HAVE to use it. If you like it, use it. If you don't, use something else.

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